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Early Tuesday, a port truck driver strike that began Monday at port terminals in Los Angeles and Long Beach, Calif., spread to nearby intermodal rail yards served by Pacer Cartage and Harbor Rail Transport (HRT).Port truck drivers followed trucks driven from Pacer and HRT facilities to customer locations, including the rail yards, and picketed while the trucks were operating. The drivers are striking to end what they allege is a "misclassification" as independent contractors, denying them better wages and basic workplace protections such as safety and health regulations, workers compensation, and disability and unemployment insurance.The drivers are demanding a more fair wage that incorporates time spent waiting for dispatch to issue a load, waiting in line at the ports and sitting in traffic on nearby roads. They also want to eliminate what they characterize as illegal barriers to unionization, obstacles to workplace protections and effects from being classified as independent contractors.Members of the Teamsters and other unions in the Los Angeles/Long Beach area have supported the strikes at the terminals and intermodal yards.
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